Monday, October 10, 2005

Tales from the Riverbank

Once upon a time......

(to see full size image please double click on images)

well about six weeks ago Aussie J...( Australian who helps to deforest Latvia) and R.. ( English - 2nd generation Latvian - and who does not sell second hand PC's) decided to host a "party" in nether regions of Latvia. The whole concept was based on having a roast pig as the main event, along with with this mouth watering treat, various delicacy's both of the solid and liquid varieties were too be on hand, in order that a minimum level of sobriety could be maintained. All of this to be enjoyed in peace and quiet of the Latvian countryside.

The first and critical challenge was to find a dead pig and of course a spit on which to roast it. Delegation for supplying the pig fell to R.. , with joint responsibility to find a spit. For the next few weeks various concepts were discussed in relation to the spit - these varied from " could we modify a bicycle" to "Do not worry" ( this from Aussie J...) I will get one my people to "knock one up".

So with great expectations the great day arrived last Saturday, the biggest surprise of all was the weather - it was absolutely stunning, blue skies and a temperature of around 18 degrees.

Before I go further in regaling this tale, I must introduce the list of characters who feature, and without whom there would be no tale)

T...... ( Swedish - part time hells angel, part time fireman - daytime job involves playing with plastic)
C...... ( Malaysian - who cooks the books - burns them actually - christian name rhymes with - Achoooo and co-holds world record for the loudest snoring with S....., wife lives in Malaysia - -and who can blame her !)
R....... ( Another Malaysian - member of Green Tea Appreciation Society - and thinks this is winter !! - is he in for a surprise in a few months !)
S....... ( Welsh - check out " A village life for me"- and co-holds world record for the loudest snoring with C....)
Aussie J.... (see above)
R.. ( see above)
T.. ( American - makes candles - and has the loudest laugh in Latvia, and probably the world)
R.... ( Russian - wife of T.. - makes great salads)
S...... ( Ukrainian - check out " A village life for me")
B..... ( English - Teacher - part time (bad) singer in .......... - has features that you would die for ( many have) - and is definitely not a member of Alcoholic's Anonymous)

Diesel - Latvian Cat with with amazing appetite ( see picture)

Apologies to anyone that I left out

So the cast gathered at what can only be described as heaven on earth - a beautiful riverside setting on the Daugava, Log cabins, log Sauna house. On the day with not a breeze in sight we all duly assembled to do justice to the pig and the setting.

Well it appears the pig was killed, but as no one has actually seen it who can tell, but we were assured by R.. that it was in his Dad's freezer ( either a small pig or a big freezer). However the real reason for the non appearance of the pig, was of course the total absence of a Spit ! - So no roast pig.

But would this dampen the spirits ?- of course not - plan "B" had been put into operation by Aussie J... - he had visited the local Rimi supermarket, and cornered the market in , beef, pork, beer and a whole host of other goodies in which the assembled cast could indulge. ( Definitely Brownie points at this stage to Aussie J.... ). The picture shows some of the cabins in background, the foreground is a perfect study of the chaos the preceeded the cooking - please note the Double creams courtesy of ASDA. The reason for Crisp packet being wide open is that Diesel ( the cat) had just "dined" on them

So there we sat around the campfire ( OK it was a barbecue) - with beers in hands much foolish chatter - when the cry went up - "has anyone brought some Cd's" - fortunately S...... (Ukranian)had not at this stage turned up but C.... - declared that he had brought some - Malaysian ??.

The picture I will leave to your imagination - 10-12 good men, of varying nationalities, sitting with beers in their hands, or in the case T.. - whiskey, eating their beef / Pork steaks ( beautifully cooked by C... and R.....), with the river Daugava glistening in the background, to accompaniment of Malaysian Pop music - surreal.

But the question you may ask could it get better ( or worse) - well depending on your musical taste it could and did- enter T.. - with some of the most obscure American folk/country music that I have ever heard. Again I will leave it to your imagination to paint this picture in your mind.

Suffice to say that nobody was joining in the chorus !!

Having had been fed and watered it was soon time to stretch the legs, and so of I and S...... (Welsh) went to walk along the riverbank - and after what seem miles( in reality about 100 meters) - what did we find, a little man made beach of sand and rocks, and sitting on the bank was - Two cars seats - so what was a man to do ( or in this case men to do) - sit down, close your eyes, let the sun shine upon your face and sit in perfect silence - absolutely magical.

During this wonderful interlude Mrs Swan appeared ( of course it could have been Mr Swan) who proceeded to make a bee (swan ) line for S...... ( Welsh) who by this time had sat down by the waters edge. Clearly seeing that he bore no resemblance to Tom Sellick ( see "A village life for me") - he began to suggest that to S...... (Welsh) that should remove himself at once from what was clearly his bit of water. So he did and returned to car seat, to continue the afternoon watch on the activities on the river.

So once again the pair of us relaxed and move ever closer to state of sleep, but then just as I was about to nod off, I heard this faint but growing ever loud sound - was the swan about to attack ? NO it was S..... (Welsh) -snoring ! - and he was not even asleep - how can he do that without being asleep ???

Notwithstanding this "little" noise feature, we were in any event to be disturbed by the rest of cast, whereupon we all spontaneously joined a battle of " pebble skimming".

For those of you not familiar with this most British of sports, which ranks only second to Pooh Sticks as a water based sport. It involves finding a suitable pebble ( must be ideally round and flat) - then one throws ( or skimages is the technical phrase) such that the pebble skims ( or bounces) across the water. The winner is he ( or she) who can get the most bounces ( or skims) out of the pebble.

The battle raged on for the best part of 40 minutes, which each participant eagerly scouring the beach to find the idea pebble with which to claim his moment of fame. For some ( R.. it was painful, at best a score of two - but S..... (Welsh) claimed victory with a "sixer".

Ah the games men play..............................

Foolishly a game of football ( soccer if anyone from America reads this) then ensued, or a game of four aside took place - I personally refrained from this activity - fearing mortal injury, and the strong desire to return to my car seat, spared from Snoring S........ (Welsh) and enjoy a few minutes of beautiful silent bliss , with only the faint background noise of the football hooligans in the background.

Regretfully and given the fitness level of the participants, the "game" only lasted about 10 minutes.

So with the sun slowly setting around 6.00pm we all trudged our way back ( another 100 meters) back to once again take up the challenge of beer consumption.

It was over the beers and in conversation B..... - that the F... word suddenly appeared in great profusion, when I explained to B..... that I found that particular swear word offensive ( before you ask yes I have used it, but I just find it offensive to my ears -do not ask why - just do - suspect it is my age).

In my experience its level of use is directly related to the amount of alcohol consumed.

However for those who wish to extend the use of the F... word may I recommend this web site - It will truly permit one to extend the many variations and uses on the F... word. (NB You need to sound on your PC turned on to fully appreciate) All that I would ask that you refrain when in my presence. ( Small note should anyone choose to use the F... word in Comments - then the comment will be instantly deleted - likewise any other unsuitable words or phrases - this is a family blog).

So the evening progressed and we viewed the most stunning sunset that you can imagine ( You do not have to imagine see the picture) - and then with great regret I had to depart from the ensemble to return to Riga. So what actually transpired in the wee hours I cannot relate, but from the tales that I have heard, much merrymaking along with good food and a sauna took place.

So for me it was the end of a perfect day / evening, Good food & Drinks, Good Company, Stunning location, DB sent off, and Scotland having the grace to lose to Belarus, thereby saving us from any future embarassment in Germany- and for the rest of cast simply the end of Act1.

Communal sleeping took place, with S...... and C... placed at opposite ends of the building, thereby ensuring stereophonic snoring was enjoyed by all. However I suspect that the alcohol intake by all was sufficient to deaden the noise.

So here I must close this tale, other than to say that Latvia never fails to amaze me, it truly has some of the most beautiful spots, you just have to go and find them. So all have agreed that come winter, probably late February the characters in this tale, along with others I am sure, will re-assemble at this most wonderful location, to enjoy the snow, walk on the frozen river - and be able to leap from the Sauna into the snow and then back into the Sauna.

Myself I will be sitting by the log fire - with beer in hand, listening to what is now my favourite music - Malaysian hip-hop.

For those of you may wish to stay at this glorious location, go check out the web site, who will not regret going there.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now you know why I encourage him to spend so much time in Riga. Wife of S......{welsh}

6:15 pm  
Anonymous The spitless Pig said...

Help I am trapped in R_ _ 's fathers freezer!

1:35 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So what exactly are you saying? I'm ugly, foul mouthed and a dipsomaniac? Are you trying to drag my good name through the mud?

7:53 pm  

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